thanksgiving 2020 – finding things to be thankful for in the middle of a bad relationship with that bitch Rona

Things I’m thankful for right now:

  • We both have jobs and we both have health insurance that’s worth having
  • We’re healthy, and my mom and step-dad are healthy
  • We’re lucky enough to have a very nice, comfortable home to live in
  • We have three ridiculous fur-babies in our lives
  • My job allows me to work from home right now which is providing a much needed relief from excess anxiety and helping to keep me safe from contracting COVID-19
  • I have some truly amazing friends that, even though I don’t get to see them in person, will text or do video calls and they’re helping to keep me sane
  • That Lancelot is so stinkin’ patient with my shenanigans
  • And while I don’t know that anyone is ever really prepared to live through such a prolonged and emotionally draining event like a pandemic, I feel as though mentally I’m the strongest I’ve ever been and in the best position possible to come out the other side of this a better human because of it

I know it’s hard right now, and stuff does kinda suck, but I would like to encourage all of you reading this, whenever you read it, to try to think of at least one thing you’re thankful for. If you can think of more, that’s awesome. I try to do this little exercise every day, usually on Facebook, and it helps. There’s something about intentionality and “priming” yourself to be in a more optimistic mindset that seems to help. (your mileage may vary, but come on, it’s worth a try, yes?)

If that doesn’t work you can always try boozy hot cocoa. This is the way.

just make it fucking stop already

Did you know that if you have roadside assistance coverage on your auto insurance policy they will come to your house and jump start your car while it sits in your garage? True story. Do you want to know how I know this? Yeah, probably not. Let’s just leave it at I am now the thoroughly delighted owner of a new car battery. Let’s also leave it at this has not been the greatest of days.

Things being what they are, I had little hope that this day would improve and I’m delighted to say that it has not. Nothing quite like going from bad to utterly shitty. Oh well, tomorrow is Friday, right?

Please, for the love of all that is holy, say that tomorrow is Friday… I can’t take much more of this “work” bullshit.

I was able to get a bit more done in my office, mostly stuff with filing and whatnot. Important but certainly not glamorous. And there’s more left to be done, naturally. But there aren’t any plans for Thanksgiving and Lancelot will have to work his usual shifts, so that will likely provide some time.

It’s sort of ridiculous to say that Thanksgiving will be different this year, as if everything since March has been totally fucking normal. But holidays are a different creature, especially for someone who – up until April – had a fairly tight family and did things with them on a very regular basis.

My mom and R are heading south for a few days and will spend the holiday with my cousin. I think that’s awesome, but I wouldn’t want to be part of it. (my cousin has 4 boys and I’m not exactly enamored of her husband)

L’s family isn’t a known quantity for me, though I’m guessing there won’t be any gatherings. They’re recommending no one really gathers this year because of Rona.

And L really will work his regular schedule and I’ll get my typical Thursday/Friday off. Since we don’t have kids this suits us just fine. I might make a turkey breast in the ol’ slow cooker and I’m going to try to make a big pan of my mom’s dressing. Honestly, all I really need in terms of holiday food is that dressing, my own gallon of gravy, and my grandmother’s cranberry relish. I’m not sure what L is going to eat. (oh alright, I’ll share…)

At any rate, life is getting a little excessively busy around here. I’ve got some doctor stuff coming up, L has a few appointments of his own, our small Halloween gathering (in the garage) is on Saturday, and the election is on Tuesday. We’ll be driving our ballots to the local election commission office this weekend.

I don’t want to give away who I’m voting for, but I will just say that Trump can go suck a rancid zombie dick and choke on it.

one day at a time

Today is the day I go for my latest blood draw, get the stuff to do my 24 hour urine collection, and have an ultrasound of my kidneys. You’re jealous, I know you are. At least I don’t have to go to the hospital to have this done, and that’s good. We’re still a red state, and this is a red county, and that goddamn Rona got me all twitchy. And that’s mostly because not everyone around here is taking this seriously.

Moving on…

I’m still working on Off Kilter, 10 repeats of 25 done on the main body, so that’s good. I took the time to print a few more patterns I had saved the other day and put them in my little tote bags along with the yarn I’ll be using. I also spent a few minutes updating my yarn inventory. And now we pause.

Does anyone else have a spreadsheet of their yarn or is that just something odd that I do?

It actually started because Lancelot made an off-hand comment at one point about how much yarn I had and didn’t I have enough already. (and yes, I did still marry him) So by way of proving that I did not actually have too much yarn I did what any reasonable knitter would do and drug every last skein and ball out of storage and cataloged it. (maybe I should mention that my undergrad degree was in Library Science, but I’d have cataloged it anyway)

I seriously recommend doing this, for whatever craft or hobby thing you’re into. You’ll come out with a much better understanding of what you have and you’ll likely notice some trends. Like for me, I have WAY more sock/fingering weight yarn than anything else and a lot of that is from Knit Picks.

That’s a piece of my spreadsheet. Ain’t it purty?

I really do find it helpful. I try to add the information about new yarn when I get it and then once I use a skein I highlight that row and make a brief note about what I used it for and when. Ideally I would love to go back and get pictures of the things I’ve made and be able to tag the photo with what yarn I used and when the project was completed. I know a lot of people do that and I think it’s a great idea. It definitely appeals to my desire for order.

And since we’re talking about new yarn…

Wooly Wonka Arianrhod Sock yarn in Peacock

That lovely yarn arrived earlier this week. Lancelot picked out the color and it’s so stinkin’ pretty. I took the picture right next to the window so the color is pretty close. The two skeins I got of this are going to become a Sunset Lights shawl. I think it’s going to be absolutely stunning.

So yes, I desire order. I think I’ve mentioned this before but I don’t deal well with chaos, not in my physical surroundings and not in my head. And unfortunately the more chaos there is in my physical world the harder it is to control what’s happening in my head. The one feeds the other. This is part of why every morning (except Fridays) I make the bed. I also usually take time to straighten up the house (if I didn’t the night before) and I try to run a load of laundry as soon as there’s enough to do so.

If my home, and now my office at home, are tidy and orderly then it’s easier for me to feel like my head space can be more orderly. Knitting, and cooking to an extent, are also part of that. Having that time to relax with something I enjoy is crucial.

I know it’s hard for all of us right now with everything being different and scary, but my tiny bit of advice is to control what you can and roll with the rest of it.

Or you can be like Eric and bury your head in your paws while you nap

it’s a sickness

I’m one of those people who pretty well has to be busy all the time. I have this sort of compulsion to be doing things. I love lists and that feeling of crossing things off of them. My idea of a good day off is getting a ton of shit done.

Seriously, I wonder if there’s some kind of medication for this?

I’m only partially jesting. I know that part of my compulsions could easily be tracked back to the bipolar, so I keep a close eye on that shit. When I get to the point where I feel like I need to do ALL the things all at once, I call the good doc.

Right now I think that more than anything this is a need to have some kind of control over my world in an effort to experience some normalcy. And who doesn’t need/want that these days?

So this weekend we spent some time getting ready for the Halloween party, in addition to getting things done around the house that had been put off for too long. Laundry got caught up again, the utility room in the basement got cleaned, and we just sort of tidied up in general. And I knit.

I keep thinking I should take a picture of what I’m working on but then I forget until the lighting is just horrid, but this is at least a try…

Off Kilter

This is my Off Kilter shawl, using size 3 needles (I’ll have to switch to longer ones soon), with La Jolla yarn from Baah in the Pink Tourmaline colorway. The color in this picture isn’t quite right, though it is delightfully bright. The pattern suggested a yarn with a nice color change in it, which would be great, but I think this is going to be wonderful. I’m figuring that the unusual construction will be even more obvious in the solid color. And the pattern is a great balance of “mindless” and “gotta count right here.” Just a fabulous project all the way around.

surviving a pandemic is harder than advertised

First things first – this shit is HARD. And by “this shit” I mean “life” right now. I won’t pretend that I had any idea what this whole Rona Plague business was going to be when it all started, but I certainly didn’t figure it would be like this. And I had NO FUCKING CLUE that my fellow humans had the potential to be so ridiculously stupid about all of it.

I think it’s probably safe to assume that we’re all struggling, at least a little. It’s still difficult to get certain supplies, like toilet paper and seriously what the ever loving fuck is up with that? We’re still not supposed to gather unless it’s outside or with people that already live in our homes, and in many places there are still mandates to wear face masks (which I FULLY support). I haven’t seen a movie in a theater in so long that I can’t tell you what the last movie I saw was, we haven’t been to any live concerts or theatrical shows, and I still don’t get the deal with the TP shortage.

And we’re scared. There’s proof now that someone who had the virus and recovered has been re-infected by another genetically different strain. So yeah, WTF?

We need some social interaction that doesn’t happen through a screen, but how do we get it safely? That is a fabulous question. According to my psych doc the time has come to get a fire pit or space heater and a warmer coat, you know, so we can have some friends over but stay outside so that we stay safe. Maybe we’ll build a snowman, who’s in? (no snow yet but it’s coming, oh yes, winter is coming…)

At any rate, we’re a “red” state again (still?) so I’ve decided we aren’t going out this weekend. I’d rather stay home and play it safe than go out anywhere unnecessary. Besides, there’s plenty of stuff to do around the house. We are actually going to have a very small Halloween party in the garage. I purchased an electric space heater and I found an idea for using Sterno cans to make little fire pit things for roasting hot dogs and marshmallows. I am very much looking forward to it, and yes, we’ll be keeping it safe.

So there are a few things to do to get ready, and there’s always knitting to do. I’m still working on the shrug I started but it’s just boring right now. I like boring sometimes, but I also like something that requires a little more concentration. With that in mind, and as always trying to find something that was already wound up and would work, I started Off Kilter last night. I’m using a solid fuchsia pink (again, it’s what was ready to go) that I think is going to be amazing.

I’m not typically one to spend money on apps for my phone but I decided to break down and get the Row Counter app (links to Google Play store), in part because I can download patterns I have saved in my Ravelry library right into it. I had been using the free version but the upgrade lets me put in more details, photos, and track not only my row but the repeats as well. So far I really like it and find it to be worth the $9.99/year price.

The boys approve